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Both arrested for 3rd degree domestic battery in Arkansas

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  • Both arrested for 3rd degree domestic battery in Arkansas

    During the early morning hours of Sunday, July 10, 2005 my wife and I were both arrested for 3rd degree domestic assault. Here are the circumstances:

    We had both been drinking at home. I was much drunker than my wife and began yelling at her. She scratched me, caused marks. After this I pushed her by the neck, leaving no marks. At this time she called the police with the intent to have them warn me. She didn't want me to be arrested.

    I was completely beligerent and unaware of my wife's actions or intent. When the police arrived, we both gave statements as to what happened. I remember telling the police that I didn't do anything. I really don't remember doing anything. My description of what I did comes from my wife, whom I trust very much.

    We were both arrested and spent the night in jail. The police took pictures of the marks on me. The police did not take any pictures of my wife. No protective order was issued.

    We went to our arraignment today, both of us pleaded not guilty. A public defender was not assigned to us because the prosecution is not seeking jail time for either of us. No protection order was issued at this time either. We cannot afford an attorney because it would cost $1500 x 2 - the same attorney cannot represent the two of us.

    We both realized that we made terrible mistakes and we want to put this whole thing behind us. We've sworn off the alcohol and we have made an appointment to get counseling. We will have attended counseling before our trial date.

    Since we are representing ourselves can we talk to the prosecution about our wishes? Can we refuse to testify against each other? What are the chances of getting the charges dropped?

  • #2
    Get an attorney and don't go to counseling unless it is part of your court ordered treatment plan. I think your best bet is to get attorneys and ask for dismissals or for diversion agreements where you both go to anger management counseling or courses.
    On a practical note, if they have pictures of bruising, they may not need testimony from either of you to make a case as they can use testimony from the police at the scene who intereviewed each of you and the police report to make the cases if the statements were very detailed.
    Last edited by elklaw; 07-14-2005, 08:24 PM.


    • #3
      We can't afford the attorney fees and the court said we would be representing ourselves.

      Why would it be bad to go to counseling?


      • #4
        Counseling can be part of your court ordered treatment program to resolve this as a diversion agreement and be dismissed. If you are already in counseling, it may limit the court's options to resolve this.
        I am not saying counseling is bad, but maybe pastoral counseling at this point so the court will have somethign to work with.


        • #5
          Thank you for your responses Elklaw. Can you answer these questions for me before I attempt a call to the DA?

          Since we are representing ourselves can we talk to the prosecution about our wishes? Can we refuse to testify against each other?

          Can you tell me the specific names of some forms I might need? Isn't there some kind of declaration saying we won't testify against each other?


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